DENVER — Colorado Avalanche forward Nazem Kadri had some fun at the expense of the Tampa Bay Lightning -- and anyone else who thought his team got away with one during the Stanley Cup Final -- by wearing a "Too Many Men" shirt at the Avs' championship parade Thursday.
The shirt makes reference to a situation in Game 4 where Kadri scored the game-winning goal to put his team up three games to one.
Kadri's family requested the custom shirt from Adrienne Ruth, an Avalanche fan who said she's gotten to know the Kadri family over the course of the season and made some art for them in the past.
Ruth said the day after Game 4, Kadri's wife reached out to her, said he wanted the shirt, and asked if she could design it. After she put together the initial design, she and the family worked together to refine it.
She said a Denver shop printed the shirts for her and the family before Game 5, but since the Avalanche lost that one, they had to wait a few more days to wear them.
Kadri's trollmanship caught fire online after he and his crew wore the shirt in the Stanley Cup victory parade. Ruth and the Kadri family worked quickly to make the design available for purchase.
"It’s really validating as an artist and as an Avalanche fan to be trusted to do something like this, and for him to wear it and rock it completely was something -- it’s a perfect ending to a perfect season," she said.
Leading up to the now-famous goal, Kadri was on the ice before Nathan MacKinnon, who was leaving the ice, was within five feet of the team's bench as the rules require.
However, MacKinnon was out of the play, onside and within five feet of the bench when Kadri put the puck in the back of the net to end the game.
Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper thought the officials should have called the Avs for too many men on the ice. He cut his postgame press conference short after expressing his disapproval of the non-call.
The situation created enough of a ruckus that NHL Hockey Operations issued the following statement:
"A too many men on the ice penalty is a judgment call that can be made by any of the four on-ice officials. Following the game, Hockey Operations met with the four officials as is their normal protocol. In discussing the winning goal, each of the four officials advised that they did not see a too many men on the ice situation on the play. This call is not subject to video review either by Hockey Ops or the on-ice officials."
The Avalanche, of course, went on defeat the two-time defending champions in six games and Kadri will go down in Avs lore as a playoff hero with a sense of humor.
This article draws on previous reporting by 9NEWS' Richard Cote.
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